Ethiopian Almaz Ayana, the Olympic and world champion and world-record holder at 10,000m, withdrew from the world track and field championships, according to the IAAF.
Ayana, who in Rio clocked 29:17.45 to chop 14.33 seconds off a 22-year-old world record, has raced just once since the start of 2018. That came at the Pre Classic on June 30, when she was last of 18 finishers in a 3000m.
Ayana underwent surgery on both knees in July 2018, according to the IAAF.
In her absence, the favorites for the world championships race on Saturday could include Ethiopian-born Dutchwoman Sifan Hassan, the mile world-record holder, should she choose to enter the 10,000m.
The world’s fastest woman over the last two years is Ethiopian Letesenbet Gidey at 30:37.89.
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